Castlegar Council hoping to have a new water and sewer rate structure in place by January

Castlegar council is closer to having a new rate structure in place for city water and sewer services, as they get ready to switch to metered billing.

Councillor Florio Vassilakakis says they've listened to feedback from residents and businesses.

City staff has made some recommendations, and they hope to have a bylaw in place for the new year.

He says the new rate structure would allocate cost to those who use more water, although for residents, most of the cost is fixed, and then there's a small percentage on top of that for the usage.

If the bylaw is adopted, residents would see summertime usage capped at 100 cubic metres for residents, after that they wouldn't be charged more for the 1st year.

They're also looking at a small rebate for very low water use.

For the commercial side, the base rate would drop, and businesses with larger base connections would pay more.

Vassilakakis says utility rates aren't a money maker for the city, the money that comes in just needs to cover operational expenses, and the capital needs of the utility.

And it's not just about water conservation, he says reducing consumption extends infrastructure life spans and can help decrease operational costs.